• Category Archives Warmachine
  • WMH: I miss the old expansion books

    Today’s online preview from GW showcased the upcoming codexes to support the 9th edition Indomitus box. New Necron codex, new Space Marine codex. At the end of the stream they previewed the next four codexes/supplements coming out before the end of the year, and … it’s marines, marines, marines and marines. Blood Angels, Deathwatch and Space Wolves will be getting a codex supplement, and the Death Guard will be getting a codex.

    As someone with designs on playing Flesh Tearers, the Blood Angels codex supplement is very welcome, but I can’t help but feel for the Ork, Eldar, Dark Eldar, Tau and Tyranid players. Genestealer Cults are (by comparison) a newer entry to the field, but some of these factions haven’t received new models for so many years it’s borderline farcical. Space Marines are GW’s golden boys, sure, and a huge part of their revenue, but when you’ve got a game that showcases multiple factions as options, to have some of those options languishing without updates or reinforcements for long – I’m just so disappointed for fans of those factions.

    This is part of why I loved Privateer Press’ old expansion model so much.

    Privateer would alternate between a Warmachine Cycle and a Hordes Cycle, and each cycle would produce a single expansion book. That book would provide each faction for the currently cycling game with at least one new warlock/warcaster, a couple of wabeasts/warjacks, and some new units and solos. Some expansions would introduce a new model type, such as Battle Engines or huge based models – Colossalsand Gargantuans were both expansion book titles.

    The value of this was that, at least once every year or so, the storyline would advance, every faction would get new models, and the game could functionally be rebalanced taking into account the competitive meta without needing to produce an enormous FAQ, without needing to ban or restrict models. If one faction was proving particularly strong, in the next expansion you could reasonably expect the other factions to get some counterbalancing new releases.

    In the end no-one was left twisting in the wind, having no idea if or when their beloved faction would be receiving some attention from the powers that be.

    The move away from print books at Privateer hit a lot of us hard, and while the CID’s are a very interesting experience as we get to kick tires and provide feedback and work to shape the future of our factions, I think something was lost in terms of delivering the narrative of the Iron Kingdoms, and in providing the -entire- playerbase, regardless of faction, with a sense that none of us were being neglected or forgotten as the future of the game was mapped out.

    Soon we’ll be seeing the kickstarter for the 5e compatible Iron Kingdoms and we’ll have our first in-depth look at the Iron Kingdoms after the Infernal invasion. Have kingdoms fallen? Did Kreoss ever find Durst? What’s the current going rate for a Blockader from the foundries in Corvis?

    As someone hungry for backstory I’m hanging out for Requiem, but I recognize that times change and the way Privateer delivers new backstory and models has changed – Nostalgic as I may be for years past, I’m looking forward to the Trollbloods CID, and the chance to set them all on fire with Feora4 once all this is over.

  • Riot Quest: Black Bella, Duchess of Dread

    As we continue to shelter in the Gdaycave, I continue to slowly work through the Silver Mountain that shames me for my lack of painting speed. I picked up Black Bella, Duchess of Dread, at Gencon 2019, one of the Riot Quest heroes that was available for purchase, and it wasn’t long before she found herself on the painting table, but for lack of a better term I stalled.

    The studio scheme for Black Bella is white leathers, and something I started painting her accordingly but I just wasn’t happy. White is a challenging colour to paint smoothly on a good day, but even though I’ve had plenty of experience with it on my old Menites, it just wasn’t working for me on a character named Black Bella. I contemplated redoing her in black leathers, but then this happened, and I’m much happier with it. In deference to her name, she does have black lipstick.

    One of the characters that is making the journey to Riot Quest Season 2, Bella is one the fastest heroes in Riot Quest. Her base speed of  6 means she moves faster than Helga On Wheels, and her 4/5 defensive stats put her on par with Eiryss and Scythe. 3 Stamina is pretty standard, but her Dueling Bladesroll one action, two boost, and two power dice, making her one of the deadliest melee combatants in the game.

    As a Fighter class hero, she gets Charge as a standard, adding an extra power die to her attacks. If an opponent tries to run away from her blades, Dirty Fighterlets her roll a power die for bonus damage as she stabs them in the keister. Should they choose to stand and fight, Side Step means if they miss, she gets to reposition. All in all, she’s very stabby and highly mobile.

    Now, should you pick up Black Bella as a mercenary for Warmachine – and yes, she does play for the Protectorate – 4pts gets you a MAT 7 Weapon Master with sword and dagger attacks, DEF 17 in melee thanks to Duelist, she can murder her way through a unit like the Whitemane used to thanks to Killing SpreeRipostewill let her utter a pointy rejoinder should someone try to hit her, and just for fun she’s functionally MAT 9 on a charge with her sword thanks to Brutal Charge.

    I’m now picturing Bella and a pair of Allegiants of the Order of the Fist running down a flank toward an opposing flag…

    Black Bella, Duchess of Dread, is available from your FLGS or preferred online retailer. Whether you’d like to stab opposing looters in Ironhead Fortress or to add her to your ranks on the tabletop, if you’ve got the coin, she’s got the blades.

  • We all watched Privateer’s Keynote, right?

    Were you online when we were graced with the digital presences of Will “I collect honey!” Hungerford and Oz “I am not a monster!” Schoonover, delivering the 2020 Keynote? We’re on the cusp of Warcaster, we’re in the aftermath of Oblivion, we’ve seen the coming of Gallamaxus as new friends and foes join the Monsterpocalypse, and of course, the Keynote – our sneak peek into Privateer’s plans for the coming year – had a few surprises for us as well.

    You can watch the Keynote here:

    Some neat things to note:

    Iron Kingdoms: Requiem

    The Iron Kingdoms RPG, reborn using the Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edtion ruleset. I love me some classic IKRPG, but bringing the setting fully into 5e compatibility means potentially opening up the setting we love to a much wider audience, and with Matt Goetz – hands down one of my favourite writers/designers in the RPG industry – working on the project, I am very keen to see Requiem in my grubby little hands.

    Bear in mind also, this will be a huge insight into the world of the Iron Kingdoms after the Infernal invasion. The events of Oblivion and the Hengehold Scroll were a major upheaval for Western Immoren, and we’ve all had a lot of questions as to the state of the world, and the fates of those left behind after the Cyriss gate closed. If the amount of lore and background for the setting in Requiem is anywhere near the quality that we got with IKRPG Full Metal Fantasy and IKRPG Kings, Nations and Gods (and of course, IK Unleashed) then we’re in for a hell of a treat.


    Our primary source of alternate sculpts and concept reinventions, Minicrate has been putting out some excellent alternates through its subscription service. Some sign up for the six month stretch and get the VIP bonus model, others cherry pick the models that appeal most. The Keynote has given us a peek at 6 of the next year’s models, but of those shown in the video I think my personal favourites are Winter Watch (alt Pyg Lookout on a Polar Bear cub) and Fiona from the Black Lagoon (alt Fiona the Black as a mermaid).

    I mean, there were no Menites in the list, but that doesn’t mean a few others won’t find a potential home in the Gdaycave…


    The Draken Armada are coming in full force, with three new monsters and six new units – but we’ve known that these guys were incoming for awhile (even if we had no idea about Gausamal). What caught my eye was the Zerkalo Bloc, a cold war era style heavy metal foe from an alternate Earth. When I watched Pacific Rim, Cherno-1 was my favourite Jaeger aesthetically, so the concept renders definitely caught my eye.

    On top of that we have the announcement of the Legion of Mutates – Anthropomorphic animals, including elephant men with rocket launchers – and the Masters of the 8th Dimension – geometric beings that defy physics and our understanding of biology. Now, I’m a commited Destroyers player, so I’ll pout a little that the Mutates are Protectors, but those Zerkalo’s will look awfully nice marching alongside my Mollocks…


    The Keynote has announced the fourth faction for Warcaster, the first non-human faction – The Empyreans. The ancient alien masters of the Hyperanuion, they’ll follow the standard templating of the other factions – Solos, Units, Light and Heavy Warjacks – but the similarities largely end there. Armored carapaces with bonus tentacles, some of the Empyrean models don’t even bother with such gauche mundanities as legs and arms.

    Humanity will be receiving some new toys as well, with the coming year’s wave introducing vehicles – the Razorbat (Marcher Worlds), Interceptor (Iron Star Alliance), Scythe (Aeturnus Continuum) and the Zenith (bringing the Empyreans in line). Each will have weapon hardpoints that welcome different armaments, much as the warjacks do. They also look super cool.

    Warmachine & Hordes

    With such a strong focus on Warmachine leading up to and through the Infernal invasion, it’s time for Hordes to get some love. We saw a bunch of new models for the Legion of Everblight and the Trollbloodsm, as well as some merc/minion models such as the Death Archon. The Grymkin will also receive some new models, including the blasphemous Defiled Archon, and Isiah the Dread Harvester, their pumpkin-headed dragoon who can turn his own victims into Dread Rots.

    While Hordes factions will be enjoying a little time in the limelight, Warmachine won’t be completely ignored, with the Retribution of Scyrah expanding into House Ellowuyr. Thyron and his Swordsmen have reinforcements incoming. The Crucible Guard will also receive new models, including Major Aline Benett, a Rocketman Warcaster.

    Riot Quest

    Riot Quest is entering its second season, with the Wintertime Wasteland kickstarter live as we speak. A new map, a new block of looters, all of which will be compatible with both Warmachine and Hordes, including the baby Gorax. Maybe he’ll be a companion model for the new Boomhowler? Pure speculation on my part of course. The core set gives us a new melee-centric Boomhowler, a new Black Bella, a post apocalyptic Yuri the Hunter, the Nyss sorceress Yssylla, the aforementioned baby Gorax, Shivers.

    The new edition Riot Quest will add a slew of new heroes, including the first dual hero, Dez (from the Mayhem block) with Gubbin (also from the Mayhem block) loaded into a mortar. The Man-o-War Bulkhead will add some serious armor plating, while Bumbles the bear is adorably lethal. Major Benett – the Rocketman Warcaster mentioned earlier – will also be released as a Riot Quest model. For Kickstarter exclusives, alternate sculpts of some of the original Mayhem heroes will be available.


    While there’s no new Menites in the immediate winds, I can acknowledge that other players need new toys too, and I can appreciate the novelty of having more things to set on fire with Feora the Forsaken. Also, gimme two of those Interceptors ASAP…

  • RQ: Feora the Forsaken and the Four Horseymans

    On the one hand we have arguably the most ambitious woman in the Iron Kingdoms, having spent years rising to be one of the most powerful and influential individuals in the hierarchy of the Protectorate of Menoth, only to find her schemes torn asunder as the Iron Kingdoms fell apart during the Infernal invasion. On the other, we have four gremlins with macabre hobby horses, representing the riders of the apocalypse and generally causing havoc. Feora the Forsaken and The Four Horseymans are here to join your games of Riot Quest and Warmachine/Hordes.

    Continue reading  Post ID 20267

  • WMH: Resolute Souls… the Legion and the Order

    As the Infernal invasion causes dramatic upheavals on pretty much every level for the nations of Caen, the best and the worst are brought out of people, weird alliances are forged, and the strangest of bedfellows unite on the battlefield to challenge a common enemy that threatens the future of all humanity. And Iosity, Rhulity, BogTroggity, Trollkinity, so on and so forth. Today we’re opening up some undead avengers, raised by the power of the Witchblade, and Morrow’s magnificent ghost-busting man-o-war…

    The Legion of Lost Souls, and the Order of Illumination Resolutes.

    Continue reading  Post ID 20267

  • Glyn Cormier, Morrowan Battle Priest and the Thamarite Advocate

    Three Humans walk into a bar… promptly declare the entire place to be tainted by Infernals, and burn it to the ground.  Well, that was a quick story, what shall we talk about now? Oh, fine, we’ll talk about the actual three models in question. As the Infernal invasion ravages the Iron Kingdoms, the militant arms of the faiths of the Iron Kingdoms are mobilizing in full, with priests and demon hunters casting aside their age-old enmity with the followers of Thamar, in the interest of, oh, I dunno, the survival of humanity as a whole. It’s a thing. There may be a lesson there for all of us…

    First up, the Morrowan Battle Priest and Glyn Cormier.

    Continue reading  Post ID 20267

  • The Henge Hold Scroll so far…

    No bones about it, I was irked when Privateer decided to move to a book-free model for Warmachine and Hordes. As a self-admitted fluff junkie, I’ve always been less concerned with the rules of models, and more with the fiction and aesthetic. As I stated in a recent discussion about choosing factions, for me it’s all about the story I write in my head as I’m playing the game. For me to be able to write that mental epic, I need to know the backgrounds of models and characters, so I can slot them into the story appropriately. No new faction books, no new model entries, means I’m left filling in gaps, and the continuing narrative of the Iron Kingdoms falters under the weight of uncertainty. So it was for awhile, at least, but then the Oblivion campaign dropped.

    The Infernals were finally coming to claim their due. The Old Witch’s motivation for unleashing the Grymkin was revealed – begin the wicked harvest to cull the secret cultists and undermine the efforts of Zaateroth and her ilk. In reaction, the Infernals upped their timeline, and kicked the invasion into gear ahead of the original schedule. They needed to act while they still had influence in the right places. The question, for those of us invested in the backstory of the Iron Kingdoms, was just who had succumbed to their influence? Where were the traitors among our factions? What plans were they putting into action? Enter the Henge Hold Scroll.

    Anyone who picked up the Oblivion campaign knows that the Hermit of Henge Hold – an Iosan with a beard long enough to make any wizard jealous – has been roaming around reading prophecies to those in places of power. Some listened, some did not, but events have been unfolding for awhile now through the Henge Hold Scroll twitter feed.

    In the absence of giving us books, Privateer Press has been doling out fiction at 140 characters per post. I haven’t yet decided if this is a kick in the proverbials to those of us who like to line our bookshelves, or a radiant blessing to those who are more invested in a digital world. One big benefit is that the fiction is available – for free, fed in continuous nuggets – to anyone with an internet connection.  If you don’t feel like reading through weeks – and now months, actually – of a twitter feed, Privateer has also been posting summations as part of their Privateer Insiders, the first of which went live December 31st. So that’s what we’re touching on today. I’m going to post a listing of some key events below. This is not to discourage anyone from reading the Scroll feed – it’s been a heck of a ride so far – and there are going to be spoilers below, so bear that in mind. Again, the Henge Hold Scroll has been unfurling for months. If you haven’t been reading it, this post is to help bring you up to speed. If you have been reading it, this nothing new.

    NB: In the interest of not being a complete Spoily McSpoilerpants, I’m only addressing scroll entries up to and including February 28th. Anything older than a few days, I figure the internet rumormill has already been rolling, or you’ve had time to check out the Scroll and it’s summations yourself. Want to know what happens next, read the scroll

    Continue reading  Post ID 20267

  • Seth has Thoughts: Tilting at Windmills

    Many moons ago, when Captaincon was Templecon, I played against a gentleman fielding a MKII Harbinger list against my Gator army.  We were having a great game, lots of laughter, good discussion etc. Being a particularly good and congenial opponent, we worked out together the average damage my Posse would take walking into the feat, which was a PW14 damage roll.  We determined a significant number of Posse would live making the move worth the risk.  Fifteen damage rolls later and not one roll below a 9, most of my Gatorman Posse were turned into alligator shoes.  My opponent felt guilty, worried he had just stolen the fun from our game, but I had one last trick up my sleeve:  The Flying Circus!

    Harbinger was within charge range plus 6 inches of a Wrastler.    This is an old MKII minion trick where Rask casts Fury on the model being thrown.  Wrastler #1 throws Wrastler #2 and casts his Rise animus on him making him stand up.  The Second Wrastler activates and whatever it touches dies.   So I activate secret plan Flying Gator Circus:  Rask casts his spell, Wrastler #1 moves up, is  forced to power attack throw…..and….double 1’s on the attack.  There was a pause.  I had everyone reason to throw dice, blame the terrible luck, or suggest that approximately 96% of the time I make that roll and win that game. But instead….. I laughed. It was the kind of laughter that made everyone in the hall stop and turned to see why they were not having as much fun as we were having.   I can’t tell you why I laughed.  Felt good.  Kept the joy of the game undiminished and when I see this player at various events he and I still laugh about it YEARS later.

    I often tell this story to illustrate the futility of tilting.  For our purposes we will define titling as losing your cool, temper or focus during a game that negatively impacts your game play or experience for the remainder of the game or event.  I tell players, “have fun, it’s a game don’t bother getting upset!” But I am wrong.  Telling someone not to tilt when something goes horribly wrong is the same as telling someone not to be upset or disappointed when the person should justifiably be upset.  It devalues and minimizes a person’s justifiable reaction.   We participate in a truly competitive game so there is a certain level of dissatisfaction that should come with improving game play.  So instead of saying, ‘just don’t tilt’ it is better asked why we tilt.   Let us look at an example…

    Continue reading  Post ID 20267

  • There’s a Storm Breaking at CaptainCon

    Wargames are all fun and… well, games, but they come to life when we invest them with a little narrative. Whether it’s just in our heads, or a fully fledged narrative campaign like Oblivion, there are incredibly rich gaming experiences out there if you let your imagination wander, or step into the story crafted by your local organizer. Looking back at the last Lock & Load, the Stormbreak narrative event was a huge success as participating players fought for control of Khador’s Stormbreaker class skyship. This coming CaptainCon, thanks to one particularly enterprising organizer and his local pal(s) strategically applying their table and terrain making skills, 16 lucky attendees will get to try their hands!

    CaptainCon 2020 Warmachine & Hordes
    Narrative Event: Stormbreak

    An event of epic proportions is coming to CaptainCon this year, one unlike anything that’s been seen at the show before. The Stormbreak event at Lock & Load 2019 was the culmination of months of leagues and events ran at shops around the world and now it’s coming (unofficially) to CaptainCon! Sixteen players will join me to battle for control of the skies on the back of  Khador’s most powerful weapon; the Stormbreaker skyship. This massive 8 v 8 battle takes place across two decks of the enormous vessel, both tables custom-made by a New England local especially for this event.

     *Pictures are work-in-progress*

    Continue reading  Post ID 20267

  • Alexia and the Vigilants

    Aside from sounding like an 80’s alternative band of some sort, Alexia the Undying and the Order of Illumination Vigilants may be just what you need to thwart the Infernal incursion in your local meta. On the one hand, arguably the Iron Kindgom’s most power necromancer. On the other, a strike team of zealous soldiers that can roughly be equated with overly religious ghostbusters.

    Continue reading  Post ID 20267